NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Many people would like to see the Citi Bike program expanded into all of New York City, but that will not happen unless the city helps pay for it.
As WCBS 880’s Rich Lamb reported, there will be 12,000 Citi Bikes being ridden in New York City by the end of next year. City Department of Transportation Commissioner Polly Trottenberg pointed out that not a penny of taxpayer money has been used.
The DOT handles planning for Citi Bike, a company called Motivate runs it, and users pay for it, 1010 WINS’ Sonia Rincon reported.
“We are the only system that has been completely privately funded,” Trottenberg said. “New York is unique in that regard.”
Citi Bike stations are operating in parts of Manhattan, Brooklyn and Queens. But City Council members are calling for a more widespread installation in all five boroughs.
The council members said lower-income New Yorkers with the least access to Citi Bike need more transit options.
Jay Walder is chief executive officer of Motivate.
“I do not believe that you can look to a major expansion of Citi Bike on the same model that we have today without some degree of public support,” he said.
Councilmember Helen Rosenthal (D-6th) of the Upper West Side is not sure that is wise.
“I would push back very strongly on the city dedicating funds,” she said.
Citi Bike said the biggest challenge is rebalancing – keeping all the bike decks in the city stocked.
Trottenberg said no decision has been made to commit public funds.